Friday, July 12, 2024

India Hope Their Experiments Work In Series Decider Against West Indies

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In the ODI series decider against the West Indies on Tuesday, India will be eager to see if their middle-order experiment with Sanju Samson and Suryakumar Yadav proves successful.

In the upcoming ODI series decider in Tarouba on Tuesday, India is pinning its hopes on the experiment of introducing Sanju Samson and Suryakumar Yadav into the middle-order, aiming for positive outcomes. India, a team that has maintained an unblemished ODI series record against West Indies since 2006, is facing an unusual series predicament following their decision to rest captain Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli, a move that backfired in the second match in Barbados. Head coach Rahul Dravid emphasized, after the six-wicket loss on Saturday, that India is adopting a broader perspective in preparation for the upcoming Asia Cup next month and the forthcoming World Cup. This final match offers another opportunity to evaluate the impact that the younger players can make in a must-win scenario.

“We will always consider the bigger picture. At this stage in the cycle, with the Asia Cup and World Cup looming, we have to examine the broader context, particularly in light of some injuries we’ve encountered. We mustn’t become overly fixated on individual games or series; doing so would be a mistake,” Dravid stated on Saturday.

Suryakumar, who has encountered difficulties in finding his form in the 50-over format, is determined to play a substantial innings and contribute to a potential victory.

For players like Samson, who have made multiple comebacks but have struggled to cement their place, the series decider represents a golden opportunity. He is likely to occupy the number three spot, as he did in the second ODI.

While opener Ishan Kishan has displayed impressive form with the bat since the Test series, Shubman Gill is yet to make a significant impact after a relatively subdued tour of West Indies.

Hardik Pandya, who has been tasked with opening the bowling, is gradually increasing his workload. However, he has faced difficulties with the bat and will be eager to regain his form before the five-match T20 series against the West Indies.

In the bowling department, fast bowler Umran Malik is determined to prove himself after going wicketless in the series thus far. His pace adds an X-factor to the Indian side, but he needs to refine his skills and accuracy. Chinaman Kuldeep Yadav has emerged as India’s standout bowler, leaving limited room for his good friend Yuzvendra Chahal, who is likely to feature primarily in the upcoming T20 series.

For West Indies, securing a series win against India would be a significant morale boost after failing to qualify for the ODI World Cup later this year. Their bowlers have posed challenges for the Indian batters, with left-arm spinner Gudakesh Motie extracting sharp turn and pacer Romario Shepherd effectively employing the short-ball tactic.

“The team will once again adopt an aggressive approach. We have been emphasizing our attitude, which was evident today. We need to maintain that attitude and enhance our consistency with both bat and ball,” declared skipper Shai Hope, who is riding high on confidence following his unbeaten 63 in the second ODI.

West Indies Squad: Shai Hope (captain), Rovman Powell (vice-captain), Alick Athanaze, Yannic Cariah, Keacy Carty, Dominic Drakes, Shimron Hetmyer, Alzarri Joseph, Brandon King, Kyle Mayers, Gudakesh Motie, Jayden Seales, Romario Shepherd, Kevin Sinclair, Oshane Thomas.

India Squad: Rohit Sharma (captain), Shubman Gill, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Virat Kohli, Surya Kumar Yadav, Sanju Samson (wicket-keeper), Ishan Kishan (wicket-keeper), Hardik Pandya (vice-captain), Shardul Thakur, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Yuzvendra Chahal, Kuldeep Yadav, Jaydev Unadkat, Umran Malik, Mukesh Kumar.

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